I know, another dessert post. 'Tis the season. When you get invited to that cookie exchange this year, lets, instead of supporting heart disease, the number 1 killer in america, diabetes, and obesity (it's projected that 3 of 4 Americans will be obese in 2020) bring something like this has good fats and a low glycemic index.
This amazing article from Dr. Fuhrman here says:
Today, more and more researchers are finally aware that it is not fat in general that is the villain, but saturated fat, trans fat, and fats consumed in a processed form. Fats from avocado, raw nuts, and seeds are rich in antioxidants and phytochemicals that offer unique health benefits.
Recent evidence shows that the frequent consumption of nuts is strongly protective against heart disease. It has been shown that people eating nuts daily, or more than once a day, had a 59 percent lower risk of fatal coronary heart disease.
One study estimated that every exchange of one ounce of saturated fat to one once of nut-fat from consuming a whole nut was associated with a 45 percent reduction in heart disease risk
Study after study shows that raw nuts and seeds not only lower cholesterol, but also extend lifespan and protect against common diseases of aging. They also provide a good source of protein, which makes up about 15 to 25 percent of their calories.
*But don't go NUTS on the good fats:
While nuts and seeds have great health benefits, they are higher in calories and fat compared to vegetables, beans, and fruits so they should be consumed in smaller amounts. Nuts and seeds contain about 175 calories per ounce, and a handful could be a little over one ounce. For most of us, they are not a food that should be eaten in unlimited quantity. Unless you are thin and exercising frequently, hold your consumption of raw nuts and seeds to less than two ounces a day.
And don't forget how good healthy fats are especially for our kids' brans, behavior, and development.
Omega-3 fatty acids are healthy fats that reduce inflammation, inhibit cancer development and protect our blood vessels. (found in some green vegetables, walnuts, and flax, chia, and hemp seeds)
- Improves your child's intelligence
- Aids depression and Attention Deficit Disorder
- Improves memory
- Important for brain and eye development
- Promotes smoother skin; prevents wrinkles
- Helps prevent heart disease and arthritis
- Lowers risk of Alzheimer's and senior dementia
- Lowers "bad" cholesterol
And finally the recipe, based on this one by Princepessa:
1 cup nut butter (peanut or almond)
1/2 c. cocoa powder
1/4 c. coconut oil
1 Tbl vanilla
1/8-1/4 cup agave nectar (I used 1/8 and it was very dark choc. tasting yum!)
1/2 cup chopped almonds
opt 1/4 c. shredded coconut (if making almond joy fudge)
Blend ingredients in a blender/food processor. Spread in a 11x7 glass pan (it will be liquid) and refrigerate for at least an hour until set. Keep in freezer when not eating. (I made this recipe so quickly when I realized I had to leave in an hour to a friend's party and bring a treat. It was the most delicious thing ever. So rich, that a couple bites will satisfy all cravings.)